Sunday, June 21, 2009

Dedicated Troopers and the Marine Voice

My horses are in full work gearing up for Champagne Run Horse Trials in Lexington in a couple of weeks.We try and start the week off(Mondays) in the shade of the Hitchcock woods.After hacking out on day one,which is a strenuous workout for everyone we try and get all the serious faltwork and jumping done early in the day(Tuesdays thru Saturdays) before the sheer brutality of the sun kicks in.We usually do dressage back to back days and have one roadwork hack.I Jump about once a week.Hard to fit it all in.We have great hills and perfect footing here at Paradise so fitness is not to hard to come by.

The days are a race against the sun and heat.I have a bunch of very dedicated people that still come for lessons and they get the brunt of the sun.I try to fit in at least one or two lesons after the eventers are done about 11 ish.So between 11 and 1 there is some serious cooking going on at the farm.Then we go again usually after 6 pm or so when its cooler.

I have several great girls that are helping out or else we would all be dead.We are bringing up a few young horses here and the girls all bring their own to work a couple days a week.

I am so proud of all the hard work these people are doing.It is very rewarding to see the riders and their horses improve.I always warn them,the better they ride,the harder it gets.There is no easy way out around here!

I even have a couple of really dedicated men that come round and work hard too!So Cudos to them!

Themes tend to arise in the lessons .We are all still making great use of Lucindas recent visit which has improved our focus and control no end.Another current theme is what we term the "Marine Voice".This is to try and encourage a positive,take charge mindset,that helps the muscle memory kick in to improve steering,pace,direction,size of stride.The Marine Voice is a slow deep voice often used by counting out loud that helps the rider translate their body language into a better rythm,control, and frame of mind.The horse goes like the rider rides it,so I try to conjure up ways to improve what I call fairy riding or the helpless housewife scenario.These things all sound very basic and simple.I assure you ,there is nothing simple about what these people are accomplishing.Everyone here is practicing all the same questions and priniciples I am trying to improve on myself and my with horses.Size is not the issue but the quality of understanding from the rider.Once they understand, they can tranlate it to their horses.It is all great fun and very exciting.

As always we have tons of laughs.Safety,Balance,Control,Confidence and FUN.Thats what is all about.Stay tuned.

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